American Sociological Association

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  1. The Relationship between Trauma, Arrest, and Incarceration History among Black Americans

    Using findings from the National Survey of American Life, Jäggi, Mezuk, and Watkins examines the relationship between trauma exposure, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and history of arrest and incarceration among a representative sample of black Americans.

  2. Sexual Assault and Identity Disruption: A Sociological Approach to Posttraumatic Stress

    Violence against women and mental illness are two of the most pressing issues in higher education. Despite decades of research, it is not entirely clear how subjective perceptions of victimization events shape distress. The current study integrates trauma perspectives and a symbolic interactionist approach to demonstrate how identity disruption and the violation of cultural meanings for identities leads to posttraumatic stress.
  3. Beyond Incarceration: Criminal Justice Contact and Mental Health

    A growing literature documents deleterious consequences of incarceration for mental health. Although salient, incarceration is only one form of criminal justice contact and, accordingly, focusing on incarceration may mask the extent to which the criminal justice system influences mental health. Using insights from the stress process paradigm, along with nationally representative data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997, we examine criminal justice contact—defined as arrest, conviction, and incarceration—and mental health.
  4. ASA Statement on Trump’s Decision to End the DACA Program

    The American Sociological Association (ASA) calls on President Trump to reverse his decision to end the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA).  Absent such a reversal, we implore Congress to reinstate the program with expedience.  DACA currently affects almost 800,000 young, undocumented immigrants by providing a work permit and protection from deportation.  DACA status expires every two years, and immigrants are eligible for renewal. 

  5. A Global Perspective on Religious Participation and Suicide

    Although sociological research in the Durkheimian tradition has generally accepted that religious involvement protects against suicide, few studies have examined this theoretical proposition outside Western industrialized settings. Using multilevel models to analyze data from the World Health Organization Mortality Database and the World Values Survey (1981–2007) across 42 countries in seven geographical-cultural regions, this study explores whether religious participation is more protective against suicide in some regions than others and, if so, why.
  6. Unintended Birth and Children’s Long-term Mental Health

    Research has examined the proximate effects of unintended birth on infants and young children, but we know relatively little about the longer-term effects. Given that unintended birth is associated with several childhood risk factors, it might set the stage for poor mental health in adulthood. Drawing on rich intergenerational survey data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, 1979 (N = 3,742), this study used a variety of statistical techniques to examine whether maternal pregnancy intentions are associated with children’s depressive symptoms during early adulthood.
  7. Achieving a Global Mind-set at Home: Student Engagement with Immigrant Children

    Developing a global mind-set in college students is a goal of many colleges and universities. Most often this goal is met by encouraging students to study abroad. This article explains how a service learning student engagement program at home achieves this goal by pairing Introduction to Sociology students with young immigrant children in a weekly formal mentoring relationship. Research on the program shows that students develop new perspectives about immigrant issues and that students report a reduction of their level of prejudice against immigrants coming from around the globe.
  8. Stress Buffer or Identity Threat? Negative Media Portrayal, Public and Private Religious Involvement, and Mental Health in a National Sample of U.S. Adults

    Guided by the stress process tradition, complex links between religion and mental health have received growing attention from researchers. This study gauges individuals’ public and private religiosity, uses a novel measure of environmental stress—negative media portrayal of religion—and presents two divergent hypotheses: (1) religiosity as stress-exacerbating attachment to valued identities producing mental health vulnerability to threat and (2) religiosity as stress-buffering social psychological resource.
  9. The Problem with Square Pegs: Sexual Orientation Concordance as a Predictor of Depressive Symptoms

    The author uses a nationally representative sample of cisgender young adults to examine the relationship between sexual orientation concordance and the prevalence of depressive symptoms. In these analyses, the author differentiates between those with an exclusive identity (100 percent gay or 100 percent straight) and those with a nonexclusive identity (“mostly gay,” “mostly straight,” or bisexual).
  10. The Effects of Perceived Threat, Political Orientation, and Framing on Public Reactions to Punitive Immigration Law Enforcement Practices

    This study explores variation in people’s reactions to a punitive immigration law enforcement practice. Using a vignette-styled framing-effects experiment, we examined whether reactions to the practice depend, in part, on who receives its consequences. More than 500 undergraduates from a large Mid-Atlantic university read a brief vignette about an immigrant motorist who is stopped by a police officer for a broken taillight violation and then detained for failing to document his legal immigration status.